Greenland Expedition – Scoresby Sound Cruise, Kayak & Hike
Experience the wonder of the summer ice in Greenland
From northern Iceland, it’s only a short journey to the other-worldly landscapes of Scoresby Sound in East Greenland. Known as the home of the sea kayak, it’s no wonder the Inuit developed this mode of transport, as there are few better places than Greenland to travel by water. Using our sturdy ship, the Polar Pioneer, we will explore East Greenland’s stunning landscape of ice capped mountains rising from the sea, serene fjords and mighty glaciers.
Cruise or paddle past towering icebergs, hike to the mountain tops or explore the gentle tundra filled valleys and tread lightly through the remnants of ancient Inuit settlements. Travelling in the later part of the season gives us the opportunity to witness the wondrous northern lights, while we still have a chance to see musk ox, Arctic fox, Arctic hare and even polar bears. Join us on this stunning adventure to one of the world’s wildest destinations.
25 August 2023 – 5 September 2023
|DURATION||12 days/11 nights|
|PRICES per person||
Triple Share with shared bathroom US$8,715
Single Sup. – due to limited spacing single supplement is full price (200%). Solo travellers will be paired based on gender and cabin category.
Kayaking in Greenland US$950 pp
|GROUP SIZE||50 Guests|
Arrive Akureyri (Iceland)
You will be met at the airport and transferred to the group hotel for your overnight stay. This evening you’ll meet your expedition leaders for a trip briefing.
Today is yours to explore Akureyri. The city buses are free of charge and a handy way to get around town. Sightseeing recommendations include exploring the old town, lunch in one of the outdoor cafes (if fine), a visit to the botanical gardens, museums, or a walk along the river enjoying a farm fresh ice cream. Board the Polar Pioneer in the late afternoon. We depart Akureyri and our adventure begins as we cruise along the sheltered waters of Eyjafjör•ur, the longest fjord in North Iceland. The sea kayakers will attend a briefing to distribute dry suits, pogies (paddling mitts for your hands), lifejackets and dry bags.
Crossing the Denmark Strait
We will be at sea all day, cruising across Denmark Strait towards Greenland.
Exploring East Greenland and Scoresby Sound
Scoresby Sound stretches almost 300 kms from east to west. Numerous fjords radiate from the sound, the longest is 200 kms and extending to the edge of the inland ice cap. Scoresby Sound is one of the birthplaces of Greenland’s famous giant icebergs and among the most scenically spectacular landscapes in the world.
Our aim is to experience as much time as possible outdoors, be it paddling, hiking or wildlife viewing (or all three!) Our experienced Arctic team will use their know-how to design a day to day itinerary that makes the best use of the weather, ice conditions and wildlife opportunities.
Following are locations we’ll potentially visit.
SYDKAP A small promontory jutting out from Scoresby Land offering good walking and delightful views across the sound. There are great opportunities for kayaking past lonely beaches where 3000-year-old gravesites can be visited on shore. Nests of grounded giant bergs the size of 10 storey buildings with green tunnels and aquamarine lakes offer hours of endless enjoyment for kayakers and zodiac rides.
ITTOQQORTOORMIIT A colourful Inuit community of about 400 residents, the majority of whom still depend largely on hunting. Explore the village and meet parents pushing prams with cute round-faced babies peeping out from Arctic fox fur jackets or stop into the museum and gift shop to see remarkable local crafts. The town is situated close to the world’s largest national park and right next to the world’s largest and deepest multi-branched fjord system. Meeting the locals in this far flung settlement is a highlight for many.
THE BEAR ISLANDS. The Bear Islands or Bjornøya, provide incredible opportunities to wind through the narrow passages and towering icebergs by kayak and zodiac and hike steep but accessible ridges up the towering islands. Step ashore to explore the coastline or hike to the hill tops to view the icecap in the distance.
SEFSTROM GLACIER – ALPEFJORD A narrow waterway between peaks of up to 2200 metres, it is surrounded by serrated brown mountains with hanging glaciers clinging like limpets to stony gullies. The snout of the Sefstrom Glacier juts out and almost blocks Alpefjord, however, there’s access for kayaks and zodiacs and the opportunity to walk on the glacier. Clumps of Arctic flora in its late summer glory are visible as we cruise along the coast.
RED ISLAND The contrast of red sandstone arches against white and blue icebergs makes Red Island a photographer’s paradise. We may be able to land on the islands for a tundra walk and an opportunity to see musk oxen grazing in the autumn sun. Some other possible landing places are Rypefjord, Øfjord, Fønfjord, Milne Land and Hekla Havn on Danmark Island.
Depart East Greenland – At Sea
Depart East Greenland and head out to the Denmark Strait. We’ll be treated to a variety of seabirds on our crossing , including Ivory Gulls and migratory Brunnichs Guillemots.
Disembark Akureyri (Iceland)
During the early morning we cruise back into Akureyri. Say your farewells to the crew and expedition leaders before a transfer to the airport. End of arrangements.
Please note: Our exact route will depend on ice, weather conditions and wildlife. The places mentionedare just examples of some of the many sites this region of Greenland has to offer. We always strive tomaximize your experience. Please remember that flexibility is the key to a successful expedition!
Expedition Leader & Naturalist
Gary, an acclaimed naturalist and expedition leader, is one of the most knowledgeable guides working in the industry to date. Gary has over 30 years of experience as a biologist and polar guide and was a consultant on penguin behaviour on the well-know movie Happy Feet. According to Gary, Svalbard is special because:
“It’s the excitement of cruising the glaciers, which can be quite active and unpredictable, and the chance to see Arctic fox, reindeer and of course polar bears. You are always alert in Svalbard for the unexpected and that just keeps me coming back.”
Naturalist & Guide
Robyn is an acclaimed author of several books including her most recent, Cold Coast, a novel set in Svalbard, about the remarkable Wanny Woldstad, Svalbard’s first female trapper. Robyn is an expert guide, historian and storyteller and a pleasure to travel with. According to Robyn, Svalbard is special because:
“To witness Arctic wildlife in its natural habitat is one of life’s great privileges—reindeer grazing on tundra, a family of Arctic fox kits romping in the sun, a polar bear mother and her young one tracking across pack ice in the hunt for seal. Nature doesn’t get any more elemental.”
GENERAL CRUISE ACTIVITIES FOR ALL
Explore at your own pace with gentle strolls led by our expert naturalists and historians. Take in the sights on a zodiac cruise or simply sit and admire the magnificent surroundings. For those who prefer to move through the landscape at a slower pace and enjoy a more in-depth look at their surroundings, join our regular shore landings and take advantage of the knowledge of our expert guides. All zodiac cruises and regular shore excursions are included in the trip cost.
ADVENTUROUS HIKING OPTIONS
There will be a range of walks on offer throughout the voyage, from gentle strolls to six hour hikes taking in mountainous terrain. The terrain in East Greenland is a hikers paradise. Everywhere you look there are mountains and valleys with endless trackless options to explore on foot. We have a range of favourite locations to hike but as always we will be looking to explore a number of new routes during the trip and it is entirely possible you will be the first in centuries to walk these routes. If you like to take in the world from remote summits or stride out through tundra filled valleys, join our active hikers and take things one step further. The hiking program is included in the trip cost and is optional throughout the voyage. Some hikes may have limitations on the number of participants.
OPTIONAL ACTIVITY – KAYAKING (Kayaking in Greenland USD 950 pp)
We intend to use the ship as a comfortable floating base camp, paddling at every opportunity and returning for the comfort of meals and our cosy cabins. Zodiacs will be available for extended shore excursions for those who do not wish to paddle on any given day.
We hope to paddle one to two times a day, with most paddles ranging from two and a half to four hours. We aim to have at least one extended paddle where we will be away from the ship for most of the day and generally meet the ship at a different location. Landing ashore by kayak, we can stretch our legs and enjoy walks on the lush tundra among late summer flowers. The flexibility of kayaking with a small private group ensures our own unique experiences, the quiet dip of your paddle perfectly suited to our awe-inspiring surroundings. Your kayak surcharge covers use of a drysuit, all your paddling and kayak equipment and the services of a professional sea kayak guide.
We’d be happy to talk to you about your level of experience and may be able to advise you on how to obtain the necessary skills before your trip.
M/V Polar Pioneer
The MV Polar Pioneer has been reborn
The Polar Pioneer is one of 10 Akademik Shuleykin-class Russian ships built in the mid-1980s in Finland for the Soviet Union’s oceanographic research purposes. Around half of these vessels ended up as chartered polar expeditions ships.
Today, only three are still in operation, with Polar Pioneer being the only one in the Atlantic, Arctic and Antarctic Peninsula.
|Ice class rating||KM*ULA2|
|With one bunk (one upper and one lower berth) and one additional lower berth, a writing desk, wardrobe and drawers, private washbasin. Nearby shower and toilet facilities are shared with other Main Deck cabins.|
|With two lower berths and a sofa, a writing desk, wardrobe and drawers, private washbasin and hairdryer. Nearby shower and toilet facilities are shared with other Main Deck cabins.|
|With two lower berths, a writing desk, wardrobe and drawers, private bathroom and hairdryer. These cabins have a window. However #402 and #403 has a bunk with upper and lower berths and a couch.|
|With double bed and a seperate lounge area, writing desk, wardrobe and drawers, private bathroom and hairdryer.|
|With double bed and a seperate lounge area, writing desk, wardrobe and drawers, private bathroom and hairdryer. Forward & port windows.|
How to Book
To ensure your place on this exciting adventure, please contact us to reserve a place 02 6355 2022 or , then complete the Adventure Associates Booking Form and return to us with your 25% per person deposit.
|Deposit required per person:||25% per person|
|Second payment at 7 months||25% per person|
|Final Balance due:||60 days prior to departure|
|If booking within 59 days of departure:||Full payment must be made.|
Reservations are established when you receive written confirmation and acceptance of the deposit and Booking Form. Travel insurance is strongly recommended at the time of booking.
Cancellations must be advised in writing to Adventure Associates. Cancellation charges are subject to regulations of airlines, coach and tour operators, hotels and other principals involved. If it is necessary to cancel your arrangements, the following non-refundable charges will apply.
|More than 150 days prior to departure||US$500 per person|
|Between 149 and 90 days prior to departure||Full loss of deposit per person|
|Between 89 and 76 days prior to departure||75% of tour cost per person|
|On or within 75 days prior to departure||No Refund|
If the cancellation charge is more than your advance payment you remain liable for the difference. For these and other reasons mentioned above you are strongly recommended to take out Travel Insurance. Once the tour has departed there will be no refund for any unused portions of the trip.